On a night where the weather finally felt like football weather, control of the CAAC White was being played by two top five teams in the state in Division 5. It was Homecoming Night and Champions Night. Last year’s Seniors came to celebrate their CAAC White Championship from last year. In addition, former Raider stars MacKenzie McGrady, Jake Silas, Dylan Carroll and a handful of 2012 players took in the game with family and friends. The current Raiders did not disappoint as they edged out the Cougars.
The Raiders would get the ball to start things off. The opening drive looked promising until a Raider penalty short circuited the drive and were forced to punt at the Cougar 33. Sr. P Cade Parmalee would pin the Cougars back at their own 4-yard line with 4:40 left in the 1st Quarter. The Cougars would move the fall out of danger but the Raider Defense would force a punt. The Quarter would end scoreless. Portland 0 Lansing Catholic 0.
The Raider Offense would mount a drive capped by Sr. SB Jake Veale’s 3-yard Touchdown. Veale would have a big game with 32 carries for 202 yards and 2 TD’s. Sr. K Tate Dziewiatowski would covert the extra point attempt. With 5:01 left in the half it was Portland 7 Lansing Catholic 0. On the ensuing Cougar possession, the Raider Defense would force a safety when the Cougars were called for holding in the end zone on 2nd and 15. That put Portland up 9-0 with 4:05 left in the 1st half. Just a mi Ute and two seconds later Veale would score again busting a 44-yard TD. Dziewiatowski concerted the extra point with 3:03 left in the half. Portland went up 16-0. However, the Cougars would put together their only scoring drive of the game when Sr. Cougar QB Josh Kramer ran in from 3 yards. The Cougars would convert the 2-point extra point with 1:10 in the half. The Raiders would turn the ball over in the kickoff giving the Cougars great field position at the Raider 28-yard line. The Cougars would get to the Raider 1-yard line but a holding call would move the ball back for a long 4th down with 4 seconds. The Cougars were unable to score. At the Half Portland 16 Lansing Catholic 8.
The Cougars would start with the ball but the tough Raider Defense would force a 3 and out. The Raiders would get the ball back. On 3rd and 9 from their own 37-yard line Jr. QB Brody Smith would connect with Sr. WR Blake Patrick. The play would be a 28-yard completion that Patrick had slip through his hands as he went to the sidelines but managed to hold onto with his legs. With 3:55 left in the 3rd quarter the Raiders would drive to the Cougar 1 yard line where they would go for it on 4th and goal but the Cougar defense shot through the left side of the Raider offensive line stopping the drive. The Cougars took over on their own 6-yard line. The Raider Defense would force another Cougar punt. End of 3rd Quarter Portland 16 Lansing Catholic 8.
The Raider Offense would try to drive but was forced to punt. Sr. P Patrick would come in this time and was able to drop a key punt in that stopped at the Cougar 1-yard line. The Cougar Offense would move the ball but with 5:42 left in the game the Raider Defense would force a turnover on downs on 4th and 3 at the Raider 21-yard line. The Raiders would be forced to punt with 1:43 left in the game from the Raider 45-yard line. The Cougars would get in to block the punt and take over at the 50-yard line with the Raiders up 8 points with 1:36 left in the game. On 3rd and 6 from the Raider 31 with :32 seconds left, Sr. Cougar QB Kramer would try to connect with Sr. Cougar WR Kabbash Richards but Sr. CB Hunter Hohman took a smart penalty by dragging Richards down to break up the play. There would be a pass interference call against him making it 1st and 10 from the Raider 15-yard line with :25 seconds left in the game. However, on the next play the Cougars would get called for holding moving the ball back to the 30-yard line with :20 left in the game. Kramer would again try to connect with Richards but Hohman would intercept the pass at the Raider 3-yard line with :10 seconds left in the game. The Raiders would take a knee to hold on to the victory. Final Portland 16 Lansing Catholic 8
After the game Coach Novara had this to say, “I am proud of our kids, and the way the handle the high-pressure situations. Our defense came up big again tonight and Jacob Veale ran the ball hard. We just beat a very good football team and I am proud of our kids’ efforts tonight. "
Jacob Veale 32 carries 202 yards 2 TD's
Blake Meyers 8 for 19
Gavin McGregor 5 for 24
Brody Smith 3 for -1
Trevor Lattimer 2 for 8
Owen Russell 1 for 4
Brody Smith 2 for 4 for 32 yards
Mitchell Mallek 15 Tackles
Carson Frewen 11 Tackles
Grant Werner 11 Tackles
Hunter Hohman 8 tackles 1 INT
Funding for this coverage of Portland Raider Football was generously provided by Robin Pline.